Visiting Rome on Two Wheels
Visiting Rome by bike is an invigorating and energizing experience. Part of the historic city center – that includes spots like the Pantheon and Castel Sant’Angelo – is closed to traffic and, even considering that it is mainly a pedestrian area without real cycling routes, byciclers and pedestrians alike can enjoy the area’s life, history and beauty.
On Sundays, a small section of the center running alongside the Campidoglio and stretching to the Colosseum is closed to traffic, making it ideal for cycling near the Imperial Forums in peace and freedom.
Parks are perfect for pedalers, especially Villa Borghese, which holds a surprise or two; its architectonic marvels and museums such as the Carlo Bilotti Museum and the Borghese Gallery are first among these. The Gallery is a veritable treasure chest of art and history, conserving marble works of rare beaty inside – Paolina Borghese by Antonio Canova and Apollo and Dafne by Bernini, in particular, in addition to painting masterpieces by Raffaello, Titian and Caravaggio.
Bikes are available for rent in some of Rome’s parks, as well as tandem bicycles and rickshaws for groups and families.
There are even private agencies that offer guided tours of the city’s monuments. Those renting a bicycle with a group will usually find that a helmet is offered as part of the package, along with a tour guide able to illustrate and describe Rome’s eternal beauty.
Or choose to cycle the city alone, guided by your instinct, perhaps mapping out your journey with the help of several non-profit organizations working to develop more sustainable mobility for big metropolises like Rome.
Cycle tourism means setting one’s own pace and observing sights and sceneries you might miss from a car, scooter, or bus. A bicycle can unite the tranquility of visiting numerous points in the city and stopping for as long or little as you like, or without even stopping at all. Plus, once you’re on your bike, you don’t have to spend a cent if you don’t want to.
Rome features about 80 km (50 mi) of cyclable routes and, although some of them boast somewhat less maintenance than others, they are all more or less feasible and enjoyable.